Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The Queen of the Frogs by Davide Cali & illustrated by Marco Somà from Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN:  9780802854810
My thoughts:  To me a children's book should be rich with illustrations that tell the story visually interpreting the text from the author. In The Queen of the Frogs the muted browns, greens, and reds and the charm of the frog drawings themselves, are true to the story with true merit of their own.

Looking at the story from the point of view of a child: It is a story of a group of frogs and an imaginary life that one can perceive exists in the pond. The illustrations bring hilarity and life to the simple story of finding an object that promotes the finder to queen status. Then of course they have to figure out just what it is that a queen does. Eventually, the queen's crown is lost again in the depths of the pond so the frog-queen is no longer regarded as special and therefore queen. So life in the pond returns to its previous state of blissful frog happiness.

Looking at the story from an adult viewpoint (and wondering if this deeper meaning is meant to be conveyed to the child reader/listener): The frogs living a simple life create a one in which a single individual dominates the populace simply because of a status symbol. Made up rules grant elevated rank to the holder of the crown and servitude to the remaining frogs. Then, when the status symbol is lost, the servant-frogs demote the crown wearer to their own level. Life returns to its once blissful state. 

The ending is interesting as humans are inserted into the tale and their ownership of the "crown" is shared as one of happiness.

I prefer to read the story simply on the level that a child might enjoy it without the heavy thoughts of political gain and loss. I love the illustrations and their colors so reflective of life around a pond. I love, too, the charm and liveliness of the frogs as they go about their wonderful life in the pond with a touch of whimsical charm.

About the book: 
An enchanting modern fable

The frogs enjoy their life at the pond, filling their days with fly brunches and night music. But one day a little frog finds a crown at the bottom of the pond and is instantly pronounced a queen. She starts doing what queens do: making demands and expecting others to serve her. But when her royal subjects start to question her authority, she must prove she's fit to rule—if she can.

Reminiscent of Aesop's fables, this beautifully illustrated book is sure to start a discussion about the concept of leadership and the importance of humility.

DISCLOSURE: I received a copy from Eerdmans Books for Young Readers to facilitate a review. Opinions are my  own and are freely given.


  1. Hi, Vera! The illustrations and story sound quite intriguing. Visiting from the Booknificent Thursdays linky party.

  2. I enjoy picture books like this with several layers of meaning! Thanks for linking up at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com!


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